Camden Rockport Middle School construction project update

By Maria Libby | Jan 10, 2019
Photo by: Courtesy of Steve Claffie, Ledgewood Construction Steel is erected in the academic wing.

A great deal has occurred on the middle school site since the last update, some of it unfortunate. As you may know, the contractors had a difficult time keeping up with the fall’s rain events. We had numerous large rain storms and the site wasn’t prepared as soon as it should have been to handle them. After numerous silt discharges into the Megunticook River (with fixes that continued to fail), followed by visits from town and state officials, the site’s storm management has seen significant improvement. Two sediment ponds have been constructed, loam piles have been mulched, seeded, and barricaded, thick layers of bark mulch have been spread over any exposed surface, and a pump truck has been on hand for about a month standing by to pump out the sediment ponds so they don’t overflow. The contractors are monitoring the situation continuously and everyone involved is committed to protecting the river from further discharges to the extent it is humanly possible. During the last three-inch rain storm, the water coming out of the discharge outlets was clear. We are sorry there were any breaches to begin with, as we care deeply about our town’s natural resources.

If you have been behind the middle school, you would have noticed that steel has been erected in the academic wing. During February and March, they will be roofing, fireproofing, and framing interior and exterior walls in the academic wing. Come spring, it will start looking like a building back there. The contractor is finishing up the foundation in the front half of the building and will be backfilling that pesky retaining wall with lightweight concrete fill soon. Due to winter conditions, this will take a little longer than originally expected, but they are keeping the concrete warm with blankets, heat tents, and other contraptions in order to do the work and meet the specification guidelines. At the end of the vacation, the main water line was put in. This runs right down the driveway that goes down behind the old Freshman wing, or Kindergarten wing, depending how long you’ve been in town.

During the value-engineering phase of this project, the board decided to add a sewer thermal heating system to provide the primary heating source for the new facility. In making this long term environmentally friendly decision, they needed to cut some other things out. Two of those items included most of the playground equipment and the softball and field hockey field renovation. At the time, the board felt the community could fundraise for the playground equipment and the district decided it could live with the perpetually soggy fields. However, many in the community have expressed a desire to forge ahead and fundraise for not only the playground, but also for the fields. The fundraising effort is just getting underway and will also include upgrades to the theater (sound and lighting) and a professional art installation (a granite sculpture by Jesse Salisbury in front of the school.) We hope to privately raise an additional $500,000 or so for these purposes. If you are interested in supporting this effort in any way, please reach out to me (maria.libby@fivetowns.net).

In November, voters approved the MET renovation, and we are just getting started on that project. We will keep the same architect and owner’s representative as the CRMS project and will prepare construction drawings to go to bid sometime this spring. We will likely phase different aspects of that project in over the next two years and hope to move in sometime in the fall of 2020.

As always, thank you to the residents of our towns who have long supported education in our communities. We value tax-payer money and work hard not to waste a dime of it. We will have a complete suite of beautiful school buildings to go with the top-notch education we provide that will serve our residents for generations to come.

 

 

Comments (1)
Posted by: Mary A McKeever | Jan 11, 2019 12:54

Thank you Maria. This is a complicated project and you are handling it well. I am so proud of you. I remember you, the little girl back in the day and you have made us all proud!

Mary "Mickey" (Brown) McKeever +:)



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